Meet the team: Ciara Burke, Underwriter, Cyber

How did you first arrive in the insurance industry?

I went to Loughborough University to study Economics, so the financial sector always seemed like an appropriate next step given my degree. My first insurance role was Underwriting Assistant at Manchester Underwriting Management and then W/R/B, working in Professional Indemnity and Directors’ & Officers’ insurance. I then pivoted to Cyber over 4 years ago where I worked at Chubb before joining IQUW in February 2023.

At IQUW, the thing I’ve most look forward to is helping grow a sustainable and profitable book. I was fortunate enough in my previous role to work across multiple territories and industries, however a lot of my experience had been focused in the UK retail sector, so I am excited to build this knowledge out into different parts of the market and bring my specialist experience to the business.

The cyber market is an interesting place, we have seen and experienced a lot of positive change and corrective action over the past couple of years. This has been due to the claims environment and deterioration of overall market performance in 2019 and 2020. However, this has led to increased competition over the last 9 to 12 months which has put a spotlight on price adequacy within the cyber market.

Tell us more about IQUW’s cyber line of business

The cyber portfolio at IQUW is mainly focused on the large corporate sector with revenues exceeding $1bn. We work with clients across the globe, with our core appetite territories being the UK, US, Europe, Canada and Australia.

Managing line size and exposure at different attachment points is a key part of our overall strategy. It has been important to maintain our discipline as the portfolio grows in order to make sure we are providing a consistent and sustainable solution to our brokers and clients.

Cyber is a key growth line for IQUW. The team and offering is expanding, and we are continuing to invest in the use of third-party data to enhance our position in the market.

What makes IQUW’s cyber book different to other insurers?

One of IQUW’s key differentiators is our use of third-party data. An example of this is our partnership with Zywave which has allowed us to develop our pricing approach and work towards having a market-leading methodology. This will enable us to continue to provide an excellent service to our brokers and remain consistent as market dynamics change. There’s a real opportunity for us to create new partnerships with third parties that will enable us to make faster, intelligent and more accurate underwriting decisions.

The team is also a big differentiator for IQUW. We have the depth of experience in underwriting and broking which gives us a unique view of the market to make sure we are meeting the demands of our brokers, clients and other important stakeholders. We are also lucky to have a significant amount of knowledge and experience within our claims and pricing functions which is critical to our success.

What made you join IQUW?

The Cyber book was launched in January 2022. It’s an exciting time to be part of IQUW as there’s a real opportunity to help build a portfolio and provide valuable contributions which will help shape the future development and longevity of the Cyber book.

Having joined IQUW it has given me exposure to areas of the market I hadn’t as much experience of in my career previously, so I’m looking forward to developing my knowledge and relationships both internally and externally. As we grow, it’s given me the chance to be part of building the infrastructure around the team, this is something I did not have the chance to do before.